"Elections Canada will pilot the use of an electronic list of electors to support voting at any table in the designated polling location should a byelection occur in 2023,” Stéphane Perrault, chief electoral officer, wrote in a departmental planning document.
The news of the use of the e-list was first reported by Blacklock's Reporter early Monday morning.
“This solution would improve services to voters by reducing wait times and help address the challenges of a diminishing workforce at the polls,” wrote Perrault in his 2023-2024 Departmental Plan which promises further digitization in the electors list by 2025.
“Throughout 2023-2024 the agency will work toward modernizing its tools, services and technologies. Notably Election Canada will invest in migrating data and applications to the cloud” – a network of data centres including computer servers outside Canada – “in order to increase the agency’s performance, agility and flexibility.”
In a June 2022 report, Perrault wanted tougher laws to prevent "hate groups" from spreading "misinformation" about elections.
His report called for changes to the Elections Act to "prohibit a person or entity, including foreign persons and entities, from knowingly making false statements about the voting process, including about voting and counting procedures, in order to disrupt the conduct of the election or to undermine the legitimacy of the election or its results."
However, Perrault, first appointed by the Trudeau Liberals in 2018, testified in a November 2022 House of Commons Affairs committee that "We are unaware of efforts by foreign actors to undermine the ability of electors to vote."
A CSIS leaker alleges that at least 11 ridings across the country were the target of Chinese state meddling in favour of the Liberal candidate, including in the Toronto riding of Don Valley North, won by Liberal MP Han Dong.
Perreault also oversaw the late delivery and tabulation of up to 100,000 ballots in the last election.